Organising against the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill #KillTheBill
The IWGB calls for the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill, which will make nonviolent protest a criminal offence, to be scrapped in its entirety. The IWGB is a signatory to a joint statement to organise against the Bill.
What is the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill?
The UK government wants to make important changes to the law that restrict the right to protest. This new bill is a response to the Black Lives Matter movement and Extinction Rebellion protests.
What is in the Bill?
It is a 307-page set of changes, covering 1) the protection of the police, 2) violence reduction, 3) public order, and 4) unauthorised encampments.
What does it mean for protests?
The UK already has many laws that limit the right to protest. The new bill would mean that the police could limit marches and static protests where the noise may “result in serious disruption to the activities of an organisation which are carried on in the vicinity” or cause “serious unease, alarm or distress” to bystanders. The Bill would make it easier for police to impose conditions on marches and protests. It would also create a new “public nuisance” offense with a maximum sentence of ten years in prison.
How will it affect the IWGB?
The IWGB has organised many marches and static protests (including picket lines) that aim to pressure employers. Our recent Deliveroo strike was noisy and loud because that was the plan! As a union we could face massive fines or prosecution for organising protests like these and our members could be arrested. The new bill would try to stop and criminalise the tactics that the IWGB and the labour movement have used to fight for our rights, both at the workplace and in the streets.
Who else is affected?
The Bill also changes trespass from a civil to criminal offence. It targets so-called “unauthorised encampments” which will criminalise the way of life of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities. There will be increases in “stop and search” by police, already proven in the past to disproportionately target young black people. Black people and migrants are disproportionately targeted by the police and will be impacted by the Bill. The UK government claims the Bill will make women safer. After the murder of Sarah Everard by a police officer, the bill fails to protect women or offer any measures to fight gendered violence.
How can you get involved to stop it?
1. Join the meeting on Thursday 29th of April at 6pm Members register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZMpcOmvpzwrEt3YbLPrlX1Iojc4KyVesoSW
Everyone else join the Facebook live event here: https://fb.me/e/WM533my6
Please share this event with anyone you think would be interested too!
2. On May 1st International Workers Day, the IWGB will be taking part in a national day of action to demand the bill be scrapped.
In London, the IWGB is organising a bloc for the demonstration. Meet at 11.30am outside Martins-in-the-Field Church, on the North-East side of Trafalgar Square.
We will be joining the main Kill the Bill demonstration at 12pm in Trafalgar Square. Remember to bring face coverings, hand sanitiser, and stay socially distanced at all times!
For information on what is happening across the UK, (This will be updated as we find out more details)
3. Help us build for the demonstrations! To stop the Bill we need to organise now, so contact your branch, speak to other members, and join us on the demonstration!
Together we can stop the government attacking our right to protest: KILL THE BILL!
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